Thursday, October 6, 2011
The above is a representation of some of the stickers you can find out there... others say things like "Smile! Jesus loves you!" and "Jesus loves you, but I'm His favorite" and some other, more disturbing things.
What have I got against stickers? Nothing. I love them. What do I have against Jesus loving us? Nothing at all, it's what keeps me going.
Then what is this post about??
Good question. See... the more I've learned about who God is... the more I've come to realize (and the more I realize the more I learn how much more there is to realize) how very awesome He is, and how absolutely crazy it is that HE loves us... the more repugnant this sort of "Cute" Christianity has become.
God is not cute. He is awesome, holy, terrible, just--and yes, loving. His love for us is not cute: it's insane. Why He would chose to love us--at such a terrible cost to Himself (He died. God. He died. Yes... God died.) is beyond my--perhaps even beyond human--comprehension. Why doesn't it doesn't shock us more?? Why doesn't it bring us to our knees in tears of wonder and repentance and humility? For one thing, I suppose, we are sinful humans. That accounts for a lot.
Another problem is we've allowed it to be come common place, expected, cute.
Of course God loves me! All the stickers say it! All the cute Sunday school songs say it! That's what some smiling Sunday school teacher lady said when I was five!
And we think it's nice. Yep, up in heaven somewheres, there's a God, and He loves me. Isn't that sweet? Fuzzy feelings everywhere... here's a sticker for you, too!
This sort of "oh, God loves me, everything will be just dandy" thinking is rather like... spraying perfume on gangrene to try and make it smell better. It's cute, and it may help (superficially) for a few seconds... but your foot is still rotting and threatening to kill you.
God loves you, alright.
But not the gushy, sweet-talking, here-is-a-chocolate-to-make-you-feel-better kind of love.
We're talking the kind of love that would cut off that rotting foot in order to save your life. The kind of love that screams in your face that you're going the wrong way and death is imminent. The kind of love... that allows pain and heartache into your life to bring about a greater good: knowing Him more.
The kind of love that dies for you.
So yes, Jesus loves you. But please, please don't take it for granted. Don't just put it on a cute little sticker.
Let it sink in deep. Ponder how incredible it is that our awesome Creator God died for you--out of love. Let it move you and change you. No more of this chirping "God loves you!" in a syrupy, fake-happy voice.
No... whisper it in your heart.
He... loves... me.